2 Chronicles 12:1-12 (NRSV)
When the rule of Rehoboam was established and he grew strong, he abandoned the law of the Lord, he and all Israel with him. In the fifth year of King Rehoboam, because they had been unfaithful to the Lord, King Shishak of Egypt came up against Jerusalem with twelve hundred chariots and sixty thousand cavalry. A countless army came with him from Egypt - Libyans, Sukkiim, and Ethiopians. He took the fortified cities of Judah and came as far as Jerusalem. Then the prophet Shemaiah came to Rehoboam and to the officers of Judah, who had gathered at Jerusalem because of Shishak, and said to them, "Thus says the Lord: You abandoned me, so I have abandoned you to the hand of Shishak." Then the officers of Israel and the king humbled themselves and said, "The Lord is in the right." When the Lord saw that they humbled themselves, the word of the Lord came to Shemaiah, saying: "They have humbled themselves; I will not destroy them, but I will grant them some deliverance, and my wrath shall not be poured out on Jerusalem by the hand of Shishak. Nevertheless they shall be his servants, so that they may know the difference between serving me and serving the kingdoms of other lands."
So King Shishak of Egypt came up against Jerusalem; he took away the treasures of the house of the Lord and the treasures of the king's house; he took everything. He also took away the shields of gold that Solomon had made; but King Rehoboam made in place of them shields of bronze, and committed them to the hands of the officers of the guard, who kept the door of the king's house. Whenever the king went into the house of the Lord, the guard would come along bearing them, and would then bring them back to the guardroom. Because he humbled himself the wrath of the Lord turned from him, so as not to destroy them completely; moreover, conditions were good in Judah.
It takes a truly humbled person to say, "The Lord is in the right."
As human beings we often attempt to justify our poor and sinful behaviors. We try to put the blame on anyone besides ourselves--and that even includes GOD from time to time.
But, when we look into ourselves and truly repent of our sin, then we will declare, "The Lord is in the right." We will be willing to take on the consequences of our bad behavior and we will strive to do better in the future, with the help of God!
I am so grateful that God loves me so much that God is willing to allow my correction when I go astray. I am so glad that when I am misbehaving, God is willing to "pull my ear" and get me back in line. I am so relieved that when I was sinking so deeply in my sin that I could not get out, Love lifted me, by turning my face to the cross where Jesus hung, bled, and died, to make atonement for my sin and gift me with eternal life!
And I am so JOYFUL that Jesus did not stay dead, but rose on the third day victorious over sin, death, and the grave on our behalf!
Sin is an atrocious thing and it grieves the heart of God. But, God loves all of us so much that God made provision for our sin by allowing Jesus to live, die, and rise again. And God continues to pour that same love out on us, day by day, by forgiving our sin and filling us with the Holy Spirit, that we might make good and holy choices in the future.
God is a wonderful and loving parent! I am so grateful to be God's child!
Let us pray: Oh Lord, you are in the right and I have been in the wrong! Please forgive me of my sin and fill me with the Holy Spirit so that I can walk in your way and do you will on earth until Jesus comes from heaven. I pray this in His Name, Amen.